Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache for a SURPRISE virtual shower!

Posted on April 16, 2012

Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache

When Erin emailed me about participating in Caroline’s virtual baby shower I could not say yes fast enough. Caroline is one of my favorite bloggers and I’ve loved seeing her excitement about the soon-to-come baby over the last several months. It is so obvious that she and Logan are going to be amazing parents.

Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate GanachePeanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache

Deciding on a dessert to make in honor of Caroline wasn’t all that hard because I know she loves peanut butter and chocolate almost as much as I do. Plus, I’ve been drooling over the peanut butter cake in the Joy the Baker Cookbook for months now! An even better coincidence, I was able to bring this cake for my brother-in-law’s birthday a couple of weeks ago. He is also a peanut butter and chocolate lover. Smart people.

Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate GanachePeanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache

The cake has a lot of components but they all came together really well.  A peanut butter cake that was light and moist, not dense like I would have expected (it also had just the right amount of peanut butter flavor, not overwhelming at all) was the perfect base.  The salted caramel cream cheese icing could have been eaten by the spoonful and the rich chocolate ganache brought it all together very nicely.  I don’t usually mess with nuts in my cakes, but I decided to sneak in a layer of chopped honey roasted peanuts to add a contrasting texture.  The additional peanut flavor didn’t hurt either!

Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache

It seems I’m not the only blogger excited for Caroline!  Be sure to check out the other posts to see what other treats were involved at the shower:


Healthy Food For Living – Carrot Cake Colada

Bran Appetit – Strawberry Mint Sparkling Lemonade


Baked Bree – Pancetta and Chive Quiche

Simply Whole Kitchen – Mini Quinoa Bites with Goat Cheese Pesto


Food Doodles – Chocolate Peanut Butter Cream Filled Whole Wheat Cream Puffs

Kevin & Amanda – Baby Cinnamon Buns


Baked by Rachel – Mini Lemon Lime Cheesecakes

Bake Your Day- No Bake Lemon Cheesecakes with Lemon Blueberry Sauce

Eat Good 4 Life – No Bake Mini Raspberry Cheesecakes

Fearless Homemaker – Angel Food Cupcakes with Whipped Vanilla Cream

Itzy’s Kitchen – 10 Grain Chocolate Chip Cookies

Texanerin Baking – 100% Whole Grain Chocolate Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing, Chocolate Ganache & Honey Roasted Peanuts
Serves 12-16

2 8 or 9-inch layers of peanut butter cake cooled (recipe below)
1 batch of salted caramel cream cheese frosting (recipe below)
1 batch of chocolate ganache cooled (recipe below)
1 cup honey roasted peanuts, roughly chopped plus additional for garnish

To put together cake, place 1 layer of peanut butter cake on a large flat plate (if you are traveling with the cake, it helps topout a little frosting underneath so that I does not slide)
Level bottom cake layer with a cake leveler or serrated knife
Top with about a cup of frosting and spread evenly; sprinkle chopped peanuts over frosting
Level second cake layer and then place it over frosting and peanuts
Frost top and sides of cake evenly with remainder of frosting
Drizzle chocolate ganache over cake as desired and sprinkle with a few extra peanuts as a garnish
Allow ganache to set about an hour before slicing and serving cake
Store leftover cake in refrigerator up to three days

Peanut Butter Cake
Source: Joy the Baker Cookbook

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup smooth peanut butter
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
Grease two 8 or 9-inch round pans; line bottoms of the pans with parchment paper and then grease and lightly flour entire pans; set aside
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside
Cream peanut butter, butter and sugars in the large bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed for several minutes until light and fluffy; scrape sides of the bowl with a spatula and continue to beat for another minute
Add eggs, one at a time, mixing on medium speed until combined between each addition; scrape sides of the bowl again
Put mixer on low speed and slowly add half of the flour mixture; stop mixer and add buttermilk then mix on low just until combined; add remaining flour and mix on low speed just until mixture is almost combined; remove bowl from stand and fold batter with a spatula just until smooth
Divide batter evenly between pans and lightly tap on counter to remove air pockets
Bake cake for 15 minutes and then turn each pan 180 degrees; continue to bake for 10-15 minutes or until a knife or toothpick comes out of the center clean
Allow cake layers to cool in pans 10 minutes until carefully removing from pan and allow to completely cool on a wire rack

Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting
Adapted from this Salted Caramel Buttercream

3 8-ounce packages cream cheese
3 3/4 cup powdered sugar*
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup salted caramel sauce

Beat cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer on high speed for several minutes or until light and creamy
Add sugar, a cup at a time, mixing on low speed between each addition; increase speed to high and mix until fluffy
Add vanilla and caramel sauce mixing until well-combined and frostilists light and creamy
*If  consistency is too wet for cake add additional sugar 1/2 cup at a time and beat well until frosting reaches desired consistency

Chocolate Ganache
Source: Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey

4 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon light corn syrup

Put chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set aside
Put remaining ingredients in a heavy saucepan and place over medium-high heat; stir constantly until butter is melted
When cream mixture comes to a boil and bubbles begin to rise on entire surface, remove from heat and pour over chocolate
Allow chocolate to sit for one minute then stir to combine until smooth and creamy
Allow to cool before pouring over cake; if not using immediately, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to a week

Peanut Butter Cake with Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Icing & Chocolate Ganache

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